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Manipur Parties Gear Up For Polls Amid Defections And Security Threat

 

Manipur would go to the elections in two stages on the 27th of February as well as on the 3rd of March, according to the Election Commission (EC).

The state's elections are taking place at a time when there have been several major episodes of violence and terrorism. Sushil Chandra, the chief election commissioner, stated that steps will be made to guarantee that the election is conducted peacefully.

Terrorists ambushed an Assamese Rifles vehicle in the Singhat sub-division of Manipur's Churachandpur region on the 13th of November, killing seven people, comprising Coloney Viplab Tripathi, his spouse, their five-year-old child, and 4 more people. A Bharatiya Janata Party MLA's sibling was detained the previous month for the murder of a university student, and an Assamese Army jawan was murdered and the other was wounded in a grenade attack in the Thoubal region on the 5th of January.


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The incumbent Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and its governing coalition, the National People's Party (NPP), already have begun their operations to re-engage supporters in Manipur.

In 2017, Congress became the state's sole strongest political party, capturing 28 of the state's 60 chairs, whereas the Bharatiya Janata Party gained 21. With the backing of 4 National People's Party (NPP) Member of Legislative Assembly's, four Naga People's Front (NPF) MLAs, 1 Trinamool Congress (TMC) MLA, one Lok Janshakti Party (LJP) MLA, and an Individual, the Bharatiya Janata Party were capable of forming the administration.

Aside from failing to create an administration amidst being the largest single group, the Congress has been steadily declining in Manipur since the beginning, with MLAs defecting to the Bharatiya Janata Party or quitting from their seats. The party now has only 15 members in the House of Representatives. The ruling BJP, on either side, now has 26 members in the legislature.

Following five Congress members entering the saffron party in August 2020, Congress Members of Legislative Assembly began to join the Bharatiya Janata Party. Govindas Konthoujam, the previous state Congress unit chief, joined the BJP on the 1st of August of this year. Up to this point, eight Legislators nominated on a Congress platform have defected to the Bharatiya Janata Party.

The Bharatiya Janata Party, which leads a coalition administration, is aiming for 40 or more seats in the 60-member parliament in the next elections. Despite several issues, such as the current Covid-19 outbreak, the BJP administration has executed various development efforts, including fostering confidence and cooperation among diverse populations, according to A Sharda Devi, the party's state division president.

JP Nadda, who is the Bharatiya Janata Party's national president, and Bhupender Yadav, the party's election in-charge for Manipur, toured the poll-bound province and spoke at some events.

On the 4th of  January, Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched the Bharatiya Janata party electoral campaign in Manipur by inaugurating 13 projects worth Rs. 1,858 crore and laying the cornerstone stones for nine more initiatives valued Rs. 2,957 crore.

The NPP, the BJP's primary coalition ally, also began poll preparations by hosting various party gatherings following its national leader Conard K Sangma, who is simultaneously the chief minister of Meghalaya, launched the party's election strategy the previous month by visiting a youth summit.